01/25/2012 02:03 EST | Updated 03/26/2012 05:12 EDT

$1.4B Evergreen Line to open by 2016

The long-awaited Evergreen Line SkyTrain route will cost an estimated $1.4 billion by the time it opens in the summer of 2016, officials announced on Wednesday morning in Port Moody, B.C.

Construction will begin after the main contractor for the project is chosen later this summer, but some pre-construction contracts to install power lines have already been awarded, B.C. Transportation Minister Blair Lekstrom said.

Once completed the 11-kilometre rapid transit line will run at ground level, on elevated tracks and below ground through a bored tunnel from the Lougheed Town Centre in Burnaby to the Coquitlam Town Centre, via Port Moody.

The announcement comes after the B.C. government reached a deal with regional mayors to hike gas taxes by 2 cents to pay for the SkyTrain line to the Coquitlam area, last July. The total cost will be split between the federal, provincial and municipal governments.